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Summit Closes $750 Million Funding; Develops New York Times Article "Deepwater Horizon's Final Hour"

by Anne Thompson
March 9, 2011 12:04 AM
4 Comments
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Thompson on Hollywood

No, James Cameron has not picked up the rights to the December 25 New York Times article Deepwater Horizon's Final Hour, although he might turn up as a character in the final movie that Summit Entertainment and Participant Media are developing about the BP Oil disaster (with backing from Imagenation Abu Dhabi). And Summit confirms that it has finally closed a new $750 million deal, for a $550-million term loan plus a $200-million revolving line of credit, led by banks JP Morgan and UBS AG.

Screenwriter Matthew Sand will adapt the Deepwater Horizon disaster story, written by the NYT's David Barstow, David Rohde, and Stephanie Saul, about the heroes of the oil rig tragedy that sent millions of gallons of oil spilling into the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010. Summit is in talks with producer Lorenzo Di Bonaventura (Red, Salt, Transformers), who could handle a picture of this scale and scope.

Summit production president Erik Feig stated:

“This film will portray the great heroism that took place last year on the Deepwater Horizon rig and how colleagues so courageously came to each other’s aide.  This piece in The New York Times evoked the raw emotion these brave men experienced and endured throughout the tragedy that took place in April of last year and we hope to evoke the same emotions for our audience with this movie.”

4 Comments

  • Anne Thompson | March 10, 2011 2:47 AMReply

    Summit closed a long-in-the-works $750 million loan and credit deal, AND, they also acquired, for your normal six-figure sum, a NYT article to develop into a screenplay for a movie that may or may not ever get made. If it's a big budget movie it'll cost between, say, $60 and $120 million.

  • Jason Rey | March 10, 2011 2:15 AMReply

    To add to what I wrote above, the Harry Potter series (or, at least the first four) cost $2 million. Two million dollars for one of the biggest franchises to date. I just don't see how this could be that much. Or how they plan on getting that much back, when they haven't yet spent a dime on cast, script, special effects, marketing, etc. ...Weird.

  • Jason Rey | March 10, 2011 2:06 AMReply

    Am I crazy or is that a LOT of money to spend on just the script? Wait..not EVEN the script. A lot of money paid for adaptation rights. Is it the most money paid for that sort of thing? $750,000,000 is more than the budget of most films.

  • Tom | March 9, 2011 12:21 AMReply

    Please give this project to Werner Herzog.

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